The Egyptian Amduat: The Book of the Hidden Chamber
Egyptian Mythology: When everything goes dark: The Am-duat: Everything goes dark. The life of the Pharaoh has come to an end. His body, soul, and spirit must travel the 12 dark hours of the night, to rise in the morning with the sun lest political instability and chaos take over the land. The walls of his tomb are covered with instructions to guide him on this perilous journey through the Netherworld, through the Am-Duat. Instructed by his father the Sungod , the deceased must learn deep magic in order to rise again. At the darkest hour, he must do battle with his fiercest enemy, Apopis, the serpent that threatens his resurrection. To insure his resurrection, he must constantly rely on others around him as well as the bounty from the day world to aid him on his journey.
This series explores the Egyptian Journey into the Underworld imaged in the tombs of pharaohs for over 300 years. The Netherworld journey, or Am-Duat is a great way to introduce Egyptian Myth to those who are curious but have found it a daunting task. Many in my classes have seen many exhibits of Egyptian history, images of pyramids and the sarcophagus or mummified remains of the Pharaohs. This course gives the participant a way to decode and begin to lend meaning to what he or she is seeing.
In 1922, archaeologist Howard Carter discovered the long buried tomb of King Tutankhamun. The walls of this hidden treasure were covered with mysterious and beautiful images known as The Amduat or The Book of the Hidden Chamber. Described by Egyptologists Theodor Abt and Erik Hornung as “the earliest illustrated religious text about the world after death” and by Marie Louise von Franz as an “initial dream of humankind.” The Amduat gave detailed instructions to the deceased Pharaoh on how to navigate the treacherous Underworld. How to do battle with his greatest enemies there and most importantly how to emerge victorious in the form of the sunrise in the morning. Ancient Egyptian belief systems held that the entire fate of the world depended on the sunrise for the successful re-emergence of the ordering principle into the world.
Jungian Andreas Schweizer writes that ancient and medieval philosophers “were deeply aware of the richness of the human psyche and its capacity to regenerate, again and again, from stagnation and depression.” In the Amduat, we find exquisite expression of this phenomenon.
Join us as together we explore the deep wisdom to be found in this text.